Tuesday, 2 August 2016 | 12:00 | Lichtenbergschule (Mensa)

Lecture: Sergej Newski

Sergej Newski: Figures of Omission – Composing in the Age of the Digital Archive

The development of the artwork’s digital reproducibility in the 20th century caused a rapid growth of digital archives and libraries. One possible reaction to the constant presence of the archive in our consciousness, and to the possibility of having access to the endless database at any moment, would be a strategy using figures of omission and ellipsis. The field of the generally comprehensible, which grows all the time, is replaced by the pause – by emptiness. A composer who resorts to such strategies works both with existing texts and with gestures or extra-musical contexts. Everything becomes an object of reduction, or acceleration – just as, in the harmonic ellipsis, progression is accelerated by the absence of the expected elements. My lecture will examine how working with the archive can lead the artist towards reduction or – on the contrary – to maximum concentration.